By Harry Chaykun
Phillylacrosse.com, Posted 6/2/15
Laney Stenson wasn’t running out of Haverford High’s Cornog Field to get out of the rain Tuesday afternoon.
Conestoga’s senior goalie was in a hurry to get home, change out of her wet clothes and get to Villanova University.
“I have graduation tonight,” Stenson said, not long after her six second-half saves helped the Pioneers (23-3) earn a 9-4 decision over Radnor (22-3) in a PIAA semifinal game.
Conestoga’s reward for the victory will be its first trip to Hershey for the state final. ‘Stoga, which finished fourth in the District 1 Tournament, and Garnet Valley, which was the district’s No. 5 seed, will meet for the state title at noon Saturday at Hersheypark Stadium. Garnet Valley toppled Quaker Valley, 13-10.
“Our defense was unbelievable that whole second half,” Conestoga head coach Amy Orcutt said. “Laney made some great saves. This whole thing is so great, and now we can look forward to Saturday.”
Stenson spent the first 25 minutes of Tuesday’s game looking forward to playing.
“Jules (Horning, Conestoga’s junior goalie) and I have been playing a half all season,” Stenson said. “Today it was my turn to play the second half. I’d really prefer finishing the game. That way I can get a good idea of what kind of shots the other team is using and see how our defense has been reacting to them.”
Horning and Radnor senior goalie Maddie Lally both had three saves in the first half, and both teams scored three goals. Sondra Dickey, Hannah Ashton and Maggie Stetson scored for Conestoga, and Emily Games had a pair of goals and Reilly Masterson added one for Radnor, with Masterson providing the last goal of the half 40 seconds before the break.
“In the second half, Stenson, Liz Scott (from Dickey), Monica Borzillo (from Scottie Rose Growney), Dickey (from Borzillo), Ashton and Growney shared the scoring for the Pioneers, while Stetson was perfect until Masterson’s 8-meter shot 1:12 before the final whistle.
“(Coach Orcutt) really lit a fire under us before the second half,” said Elisabeth Ingersoll, who helped play a key role defensively in front of Stenson. “We were focused, we stayed on their cutters and we just played and forced them out of what they wanted to do.”
Maggie Hanzsche, Dickey, Sarah Brooke, Sarah Nicholson, Maddie Little and Scott all came up with big plays. Ingersoll made a key interception as Conestoga forced Radnor into nine turnovers in the second half, and Stenson’s big save and groundball pickup set up Borzillo’s score, which gave the Pioneers a 6-3 advantage.
“We had an awesome season,” Radnor coach Brooke Fritz said. “Our seniors brought back that culture where they’d do anything for each other.
“We have some people coming back next year. We’ll see what we can do then.”
Conestoga 9, Radnor 4
Conestoga 3 6 – 9
Radnor 3 1 – 4
Conestoga: Maggie Stetson 2G 1A, Sondra Dickey 2G, Hannah Ashton 2G, Monica Borzillo 1G 2A, Scottie Rose Growney 1G 1A, Liz Scott 1G 1A.
Radnor: Emily Games 2G, Reilly Masterson 2G.
Saves: Jules Horning (Con) 3, Laney Stenson (Con) 6; Maddie Lally (Rad) 4.